Monday, December 10, 2012

Changing My Mood by the Grace of Joe's Embrace

On Saturday, I re-arranged the furniture in our living/televiewing/fireplace-watching/knitting nook/magazine-reading/dog-begging-to-be-put-up-on-the-sofa/obsessive-iPhone-addiction-abuse/and-even-occasional-conversational space.  I have to admit before I discovered HGTV I would have just called it the living room.  Now, that I am designer savvy, I know that the area is not only a room. It is a space, as in blank canvas, perhaps?
Anyway, my re-arranging the space is not big news.  I do it quite often, actually.  It gives me a new perspective.  You know, sitting in a different area of the space means I can see things from a different angle.
I have been spending a lot of time in that space lately.  I and the space needed a freshening up, so to speak.
Since my Mom passed away, I have not been in the mood to do the "decorating".  By decorating, I mean as in "Christmas tree type" decorating.
For the last three years, I have made the statement that, "This year, I'm not gonna put up the tree.  I just don't feel like it."
But then, something happens. I don't know what, how or why, but I find that I have this compulsion to put up that tree.  Really, it is beyond my control.  One day, some time after I have made the "I'm not gonna do it" statement,  I find myself in the garage, climbing the ladder and getting down the decorations.  Last year I fell off the ladder.  By the way, that hurt.  I got right back up there, though.  Now that's robotic, JT.  (Ref: Graciewildes post "On Being a Robot")
Then, to top it off, my mood changes.  "I'm not in the mood" suddenly changes to "aww, I remember this ornament that the kids gave me."  I hate when that happens!  I want to, so desperately want to, stay in the "I'm not gonna put up the tree" mood.   I do not want to be transformed into a "sitting in the pre-dawn, watching the twinkling lights on that tree" mood.
I put up the tree last year.  I mean, two weeks after Joe passed away, it was Christmas and I had the tree up.  Except for falling off the ladder, I don't remember any of it, really. It truly was a blur.
So, here it is again, two weeks before Christmas and  I'm not gonna put up the tree.  I just don't feel like it. 
Last night was a special night.  We attended a memorial candle lighting service.  With Anne on one side of me and Ross on the other, the grace of Joe's memory became a comforting embrace holding the three of us together.
This morning, with the images of our emotional and poignant evening from last night still fresh and lingering, I have a new perspective.  It's a re-arranging.   I see things now from a different angle.
This is why I may have to do just a little more re-arranging, and empty out that corner. You know the one. It's where I usually put up that tree.

I have created a page for Anna's Diary.  It can be found under the Tab titled Anna's Diary.
I have posted all of the entries to date there, starting with January 1, 1929.

Here are the past few entries from Anna's diary:
Wed. December 4, 1929
Home all day.  Left about five to go see Mrs. Naps for a while.  Then stopped to see the C's.  Very glad to see Junior.  Stayed until ten.  Then home.  Jean in school tonight.
Thurs. December 5, 1929
home all day.  Rosalie came after school.  Jean brought home a pumpkin pie.  After supper Rosalie and I went to Mt. Prospect.  Jean here studying.  Junior in bed asleep.
Friday December 6, 1929
Had a lady do some cleaning for me today.  Have a bad cold and don't feel so extra.  Attended the Montessori Card party at Elks.  Had a table, Mrs. Miller, Mullins and Witt.  I won prizes.
Sat. December 7, 1929
Home all day.  Ordered turkey for tomorrow.  Dressed it today and partly cooked it.  Rosalie came over.  Ted came at night.  Both stayed all night.
Sun.  December 8, 1929
Had the girls over for dinner.  Turkey Dinner.  Parents in Brooklyn to see Louis's new daughter. Helen and Ray came over for supper.  Hot turkey sandwiches.  All feeling full of pep and loads of fun. 
Mon. December 9, 1929
Home.  Went to see Dr. Murray this afternoon.  Having sinus trouble and a bad cold.  Junior was examined also. He was fine.  Had a long chat with Mrs. Mullin.
Tues. December 10, 1929
Home all day long.  Cold a little better.  Belleville club me at Helen's house.  Her table looked lovely.  All green and red for Xmas.  Meet here next time.


  1. Such a beautiful post! I know how lonely it is to see everybody immersed in holiday cheer. It has been six years and I still dread holidays because they soo remind me of my mom(she passed away six years ago. She had brain tumor. was diagnosed Dec. 24 and passed away over a month later). I still look forward to the holidays, though, and thankful for my family and what we have. Marie here, your new follower from the Philippines and visiting from the nablopomo soup.

    1. Hi Marie,
      Welcome. Thank you for your kind words and for stopping by. My dad passed away from brain cancer. I know how difficult that is. I am sorry about your Mom. It is hard, especially this time of the year. But you are right, having family around makes a difference.
      Going over now to pay you a visit.

  2. Oh, yes, robots live! For years I have wanted to avoid the whole Christmas tree scene - I see it as unnecessary work and expense. But I live with other people and it matters to some of them so, robotically, I always end up putting it up (or, these days sitting back while my daughter puts it up - she lives for that sort of thing!). I like it once it is there but I don't like it when it takes up too much space (literal or figurative space).
    I don't get to rearrange the furniture in the house much at all b/c the house is pretty darn small - the rooms are, anyway. Furniture kinda only works one way, in most cases in this house. But, I DO get to do is paint - as in paint the walls! I am getting stoked about painting and doing some not too expensive changes in the kitchen in the new year. I don't watch any of the design programs but Meg (the Christmas tree daughter) does and she is full of ideas! Yay! I love that girl!

    1. At this point in our lives, perhaps because we have "been there" and "done that" so many times, things like putting up the Christmas tree for the 65th time can only be robotic.
      It is amazing what a fresh coat of paint will do for you though :)

  3. Ever since my parents passed away I always feel sad this time of year. I miss them and am sad my children couldn't get to know what special people they were.


    1. I know exactly how you feel, Kathy. I guess now it's our turn to create new memories for our kids and grandkids.

  4. I can't believe it's been a year. This time of the year is so sad for so many. It's sad for me because my life as I once knew it is over. Forever. My parents are still living but I have lost 2 sisters. My parents live in a place I do not know as home. As of right now, I have no home. My home of 26 years was sold in August and I now live in a 3 room apartment. Oh, I have a new house being built. But it's Christmas, and I HAVE NO HOME. As of right now. Christmas for me and my family will be spent at my daughters home. Bleh. I know. These are first world problems and I should be ashamed of my complaining. Lynda... please forgive me.. I know you are missing your son terribly. I can't even imagine.